Off The Rack: Stylist To Bollywood Stars, Sheefa Gilani Talks About Designing Dreams, Her Styling Journey and More

Sheefa Gilani

A prominent fashion force with a pulse on Bollywood’s sartorial playground – this is how I’d describe the creative genius of Sheefa Gilani. Having styled numerous A-listers for red carpets and high stake engagements, the ardent traveler and fashion icon in her own right, has successfully converged her passions and serves as an inspiration to many.

She gained popularity after working with Manushi Chillar when she was elected Miss World, and her subsequent path has since been one for the books. Currently in charge of Alaya F and Mrunal Thakur’s wardrobe alongside the former Miss World, it’s safe to say that it’s just the start for Sheefa Gilani. Here’s our chat with the acclaimed stylist where she elaborates on her journey, stars she’d love to work with, in the future and songs she’s got on repeat.

ELLE: Tell us about your styling journey from the beginning.

Sheefa Gilani: Well, I’d let you imagine that fashion reeked out of my bones, but then I’d be lying. So, here’s the actuality of it all. There are very few people who know my roots. I come from a small town in Maharashtra called Yavatmal. As a child, my father always made sure I believed the proper education could take me to places, so I spent a lot of my young life in boarding schools. I was a young teen when I discovered that making clothes was a profession, and so by the age of 12, I knew exactly what I’d become – a fashion designer.

However, as the years passed and I moved from cities to countries, doors to media began, and communication and styling fascinated me. I can’t deny that the London College of Fashion has given me more than just experiences that I needed to learn, understand and grow both creatively and professionally. That’s when I landed my first opportunity to work as a stylist. It started with a minor assignment for the Miss India Organisation and was an opportunity to curate the reigning queen’s Wardrobe. The Miss World title came home that year, and I truly settled my roots in Bombay as a stylist.

ELLE: Core skills to make it as a stylist in India.

Sheefa Gilani: Confidence about what one brings to the table. You’re nothing without your team. Lastly, trust.

ELLE: What was your ‘I made it’ moment that really set things in motion for you professionally?

Sheefa Gilani: Every victory is a triumph for me. And I have miles to go before I sleep.

ELLE: A Hollywood celebrity you’d love to style and why.

Sheefa Gilani: Currently, I’m obsessed with Sydney Sweeney, so I’d say her. I love the mix of femininity and sexiness that she brings in so confidently.

ELLE: How would you describe your style?

Sheefa Gilani: Easy. Effortlessly Vintage!

ELLE: Take us through some exciting projects you’re currently working on / are looking forward to being a part of in the near future.

Sheefa Gilani: I love research-oriented projects, so I’m working on a passion project to make my 12-year-old self proud. I’d like to say that the summer is all mine.

ELLE: Three songs you have on repeat.

Sheefa Gilani: No Body, No Crime by Taylor Swift ft. HAIM

Sun Came Up by Sofi Tukker and John Summit

Kya Tum Naraz Ho by Tanmaya Bhatnagar

Also Read:Fashion Masterminds Rimple & Harpreet Narula Bring Alive SLB’s Vision For Heeramandi

- Digital Fashion Writer


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